It was up, up and away at the NSC athletics arena on Wednesday evening in a very late season athletics competition which was solely about how high you can go! It was a veritable feast of personal bests and Isle of Man records from start to finish at the IMGold sponsored Pole Vault and High Jump Open meeting.
In the U13 boys (U13B) high jump, Glen Quayle of Northern AC (NAC) managed to equal the Isle of Man record held by Josh Hewett with a personal best leap of 1.55m moving him into 6th place in the United Kingdom rankings. Not satisfied with that, Glen went on to better his own under 13 boys pole vault record of 1.95m by quite a margin to record a height of 2.10m! This should move him into 5th place in the UK rankings! Glen was under pressure earlier in the competition by Manx Harrier (MH) Craig Martin who improved his personal best to 1.70m. Unattached athlete Ross Christie (U13B) in his first ever pole vault competition managed a fantastic personal best vault of 1.30 after only three weeks of training! Megan Lockwood (NAC) was on form and after some rather unorthodox but very effective vaulting she set an Isle of Man U13 Girls Pole Vault record with a personal best performance of 1.80m.
The records did not stop there in the pole vault when coaches Trevor Christian (MH) and Tony Pithers (MH) battled for the senior competitions. The temperature had dropped by then which certainly stiffened their old joints up but each athlete managed to clear 2.70 which subject to ratification will be a veteran over 35 record for Christian and a veteran over 50 record for Pithers who was vaulting on his 53rd birthday!
Further personal bests were recorded in the high jump for Caitlyn Christian (MH) who jumped 1.46m to win the under 13 girls event. Island record holder Amber Sibbald (NAC) was victorious in the U15 girls’ high jump with 1.55m. Neil Vondy (NAC) was also in action in the V50 category high jump showing that age is no barrier performance with his jump of 1.50.
Athletic Development Officer Trevor Christian said: “It was a fantastic evening of vaulting and jumping with such enthusiasm from each and every competitor. I was amazed to see five Isle of Man records being set in one evening and so many personal best performances too, which is a credit to the hard work and enthusiasm put in by every athlete who attended. A big well done to them all”
A huge thank you must go to all the officials who gave up their time to deliver the event and also to IMGold for sponsoring the event too. Without this support, these events simply would not happen. IMGold is a Douglas-based gold bullion depository and trading company which this year became the title sponsor of the prestigious Manx Grand Prix motorcycle races.
Ed Pearce, IMGold Managing Director, commented: “Many congratulations to all of the athletes who took part in the Pole Vault and High Jump Open meeting, and many thanks to the organisers for their hard work. We were delighted to see that the meeting produced such a superb evening of competition.”
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